Eyes on the road, or pay the price.
With over 1.6 million crashes reported each year from distracted driving, Canada is applying tough new rules and Ontario is leading the way with fines going as high as $3,000.
From January 1st, drivers caught phoning, texting or distracted while driving will be fined $1,000, 3 demerit points, and a 3-day license suspension.
Do it again and it gets increased to $615 to $2,000, 6 points, and a 7-day suspension. On the third or greater offence, penalties ramp up $3,000 in fines, 6 points, and a 30-day suspension. Insurance consequences are brutal too, and distracted drivers can face similar penalties to impaired drivers.
Provincial police say the measures are necessary to reinforce the fact that driving while distracted poses a safety risk that many drivers ignore.
What is distracted driving?
- Phoning and texting on the mobile phone.
- Eating or drinking.
- Applying make-up.
- Smoking or vaping.
- Operating a GPS.
- Playing really loud music.
- Doing a Zoom call.
11 shocking statistics about distracted driving.
- It takes only one second of inattentiveness to cause a car accident.
- Sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for 5 seconds. At 90 km/h, that’s like driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed.
- Canadians say that texting while driving is one of the biggest threats to their personal safety on the road.
- Mobile phone use while driving leads to 1.6 million crashes annually.
- 47% Almost half of Canadians (47%) have programmed a destination on their GPS or mobile device while driving.
- Distracted driving fatalities have surpassed those caused by impaired driving in some parts of Canada.
- The likelihood of a collision is increased 3.6 times when using an electronic device.
- 94% of teen drivers acknowledge the dangers of texting and driving, but 35% of those admitted to still doing it.
- Drivers who are texting on a cell phone are 23 times more likely to be involved in a crash than non-distracted drivers.
- Driver distraction is the cause of over 4 million car accidents in North America each year.
- 47% of Canadians admit that they have typed out or used the voice-memo feature to send a message while driving.((CAA))